Adjusting to his favoured surface is not like “flicking a switch”, according to Australia’s top-ranked male Nick Kyrgios, but his introduction to the grasscourt season could hinge on the fickle English weather.
Kyrgios is scheduled to face Canada’s two-time grand slam semi-finalist Milos Raonic in a first round clash at the the Queen’s Club on Tuesday – however the ever-present threat of rain looms.
Bernard Tomic’s first-round clash, against South African giant and last year’s Queen’s runner-up Kevin Anderson, is also scheduled to take place on Tuesday.
The world No.20 Anderson forced his way into the main draw having breezed through the qualifying stage with three wins.
Organisers were forced into a major reshuffle after just one day of the main draw, with all but one fixture washed out on the opening day on Monday.
That match produced an early upset with world No.9 Richard Gasquet stunned by American Steve Johnson to create an opening in the top half of the draw.
Johnson fell behind 0-4 in the opening set to recover and win the rain-affected match 7-6 (7-2) 6-2.
Kyrgios will be eager to avoid a similar fate to Gasquet when he takes on Raonic – a player he’s twice beaten in 2016.
Kyrgios is coming off an underwhelming French Open, where he was well beaten by Gasquet in the third round, but is being talked up as a serious threat at Wimbledon later in the month – where his big serve and all-round game are well suited.
“I’ve focused on the grasscourt season. It’s a very exciting time for me,” he said.
“This can sort of springboard you into the second half of the year, so I’m just trying to prepare well for the second part of the year.
“I feel that my game is suited to this surface and how it works on grass. It’s a lot easier for me.
“It’s not as easy as flicking a switch, but I feel I can do some damage on this surface.”